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Cambridge Preparation Centre 2019-20

18. September 2006 - A Trip to England

On Monday, September 18th, we talked to five pupils who were in England for one week with many other 9th graders from our school. Those willing to do an interview in English were Nadine Kalverkamp, Linda Ludwig, Verena Schlüter, Claus Kuhlmann and Malte Ziebarth (left to right, front row to back row).

HP - As a beginning, how about an opening statement on your trip to England?
All - It was nice, good, the best thing ever, a useful experience.
HP - Well, what was your best experience during that week?
Malte - The ride on the bus was the best, but only on Bus 2!
Nadine - The atmosphere was simply - simply - undescribable.
Linda - Sticking together with everyone, that was great. One could make many friends.
Verena - The atmosphere, I agree. And the A-levels that had come along as helpers.
HP - The A-levels?
Verena - The young men who came along and were responsible for taking care of us.
HP - Oh!
Claus - Yes, the A-levels were great. I mean, they were cool and really funny.

HP - Now, when you all were in 7th grade, you talked about London in your English class. When you were in London two weeks ago, how was it? Was is like you had been told?
Linda - The strangest thing about London was that one man working for the London underground. We wanted to buy group tickets for three persons each. He wanted to sell us group tickets for ten people. He said we could take three groups of three together, that would be much easier. I don't think he understood that we didn't want to have to stick together. It was very difficult to make him understand us. AND his accent was so bad that we could hardly understand him.
HP - Did you see all the sights?
Claus - Yes, we saw everything.
Nadine - London Bridge, Tower Bridge, The Eye of London, Big Ben... We did a tour of London by bus.
HP - What is the Eye of London?
Linda - It's a ferris wheel. But we didn't go there because once around takes 30 minutes.
HP - Now, when one thinks of London, one thinks of shopping.
Claus - Yes, we were in Oxford Street most of the time. We went to one big Nike Superstore. We bought a basketball, among other things.
Malte - Eight boys bought the ball together, so it was cheap, and we wanted to play basketball at Fairthorne Manor, but they didn't have any baskets there. Oh, well ...
Linda - Verena, Denise and I went to McDonald's and ordered milkshakes, and then we didn't really have much more time because the tube took so long.
Verena - Oh, we were at Harrod's, too, but only to look, not to buy anything.
Nadine - Some of the pupils bought magic invisble pens, paper and some more magic stuff to make the writing visible again. Very strange.
Linda - Verena's favourite was the "Christmas World" at Harrod's. There was Christmas, even in the summer.
Malte - Some of the boys went to a place where they sold consumer electronics and such stuff. They bought DVDs, CDs and computer games.
Claus - Yes, the advantage in buying these games there is that you have everything in English, which is important when you want to play on the Internet.
Linda - About the "Christmas World" at Harrod's: we saw Englisch kitsch all over the place. It was so bad you could get eye cancer just by looking at it.

HP - At Fairthorne Manor, the camp you went to, what did you do there?
All - (laughter)
Claus - The activities were great. The best was the assault course with the mud pit. We had to swing ourselves across this pit full of mud. At first, nobody fell in, which was strange. But then, the second time we went, people let themselves fall in there on purpose. And that's when it began being funny.
Nadine - Everybody was wet and muddy and then wanted to take showers, but there were only two shower booths.
Malte - Yeah, seems like some of the dirt is only now coming off.
Linda - Even the A-levels fell, but I think they also did that on purpose.
Verena - But you had to be careful, you know, because the pit wasn't that deep and you could get hurt.

HP - Now, you went there because of English. How much English did you speak?
Malte - "Sorry, ..."
All - (laughter)
Claus - One day we walked to London and I talked to some girls from Brazil. We talked about soccer and the world cup. It was strange, because the one girl didn't understand English and another one had to translate everything I said.
Malte - At Brighton, that's where we were at the end of the trip, we had to do some quiz about the city. So, we had to find out how many discotheques there are in Brighton. Now, Claus wanted to go to these punks and ask them, and we told him he had to start by saying "Excuse me, ... ." Well, he went there and said "Sorry, ... ."
All - (laughter)
Linda - From Fairthorne Manor we also went to Southampton, and we had to do a quiz there, too.
Nadine - Yes, we had to do these quizzes, but they weren't collected and evaluated, so didn't really have to do them, and some of the pupils didn't.
At Fairthorne Manor, however, we really had to understand English. All the instructors spoke only English, and in order to know what we had to do we had to understand them.
HP - Did you talk to each other in English?
Malte - Some ...
Claus - No!
Nadine - Yes! On the tube we spoke English to each other. We didn't want to stick out by speaking German. And we didn't want them to know we were from Germany, I guess.
Malte - Yes, but I think the people on the tube understood more of what we were saying then we did ourselves.
Claus - At Covent Garden we were at some Italian restaurant. The first thing the waitress asked when she came to our table was if we were from Germany. Well, she was very nice and gave us two bottles of water for free.
Linda - Well, at Southampton some pupils from our group, when they were doing the quiz, were asked if they were from France!

HP - What was bad about the trip?
All - The food!
Nadine - In London it was good, not so English.
Claus - The breakfast was good, though, but the midday meals were really bad.
Nadine - But they always had fresh fruit!
Verena - The breakfast was terrible. How can you eat baked beans for breakfast?
Malte - ... and the toast was either burnt or too soggy.
HP - Did you try fish and chips?
Linda - Chips with malt vinegar. It was terrible!
Malte - Fish and chips with malt vinegar was terrible!
Claus - Without the vinegar there wouldn't have been any taste at all!

HP - How about a final statement?

Claus - Again! (*LoL*)
Linda - I think I could live there - with German food.
Verena - Great! (*RofL*)
Nadine - An experience I wouldn't want to miss. Humba!
Malte - I'd do it again, but with a group, not by myself. *OmfG*

HP - Thank you very much for the interview. It was nice talking to you.